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The Changing Portrayal of Women on GH


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  • The Changing Portrayal of Women on GH

    I've seen a drastic change in how women have been portrayed on GH over the years, with the biggest plunge during the Guza/Phelps/RC years, and that portrayal still hasn't recovered.

    I didn't see the show before the Monty days, so will leave it to others to comment.
    In the Monty years, and the Labine years,

    Laura was strong. Actually kicka$$. She was a force to be reckoned with. It's because of Laura that Luke left the mob and they faced years of being pursued, and because of her strength that they never gave in.
    Anna was literally kicka$$. She was our Emma Peel. She solved crimes, loved hard, and had the highest most graceful kicks while protecting herself and her loved ones.
    Tiffany Hill was a diva, completely in control of her life and how everyone reacts to her.
    Bobbie was a girl from the street, who set the tone of her relationships and overcame a man who beat her with her head held high.
    Jackie Templeton was a reporter with a mission and nothing was going to stop her. I honestly thought she could take down any man who came after her.

    In contrast, today,
    The police commissioner is emotional and not very good at solving crimes.
    Lulu, the reporter, is ditzy, impulsive, and doesn't think about the impact of her actions.
    Anna was a sniveling mess for the longest time, and is now written to have actively seduced the biggest monster of her lifetime.
    Laura is emotional and is seen by some others as fragile, mainly because of the Guza/Phelps years of breakdown.
    Maxie is no longer a babbling brook, but isn't the sharpest tool in the shed. The writing for her is getting better, though. I like how she stands by Liesl and Nina.
    Alexis came onto the show as this sharp attorney who held her own with Ric and now she's absolute mush when it comes to Julian.

    I know that GH has a wider viewing audience than just women today, but we're all strong professionals and it's a turnoff to see how the writers view us. I think back to women who were raised to be housewives and their job was to keep their family together. There was nothing weak about them. They were a strong maternal leader who kept their family moving in the direction that they plotted, knowing how to influence their husbands to move in the same path. This is not a knock to men, just a statement that before women were allowed careers, it by no means true that they were they weak.

    So, why has the portrayal of women been so out of touch with reality? Do the writers think that they will gain new viewers this way?

    I'd love to know your observations.
    Last edited by believeinme246; September 29, 2018, 11:16 AM. Reason: spelling fix

  • #2
    I have really bad reception and a lot of thoughts I'll share when I can, but I just want to say SPOT ON, and thank you for this post. All of your posts are thoughtful, present, and insightful - but this one is brilliant. The short of how I feel is, Guza/Phelps were the poison tip that somehow broke off and stayed in GH. They brought the "hero" concept to a crazy extreme, and "heroine" was just the woman who had sex with him and for bonus points, wed him. Extra bonus: bore his child. Sonny and Jason, who were both interesting characters in themselves, became some sort of Guza fetish alter-egos, and they took the whole canvas right off the rails. Women have only one place in this scheme of things - to fight over, win, and be impregnated by these heroes. It is quite sickening, and why I quit watching GH for a long time. Women are cut down all the time, and only rewarded by winning the man occasionally. It's sick.


    • #3
      You are on to something that is really off about GH and has been for a long time. As long as the writers are mandated to write for pre-determined stars or leads who are male they are not going to be able to write for all the other characters in a compelling way. So there is no heart to what they write … just stuff that gives the "lead" and his toadies more air time and plot-driven stories "lead" focused air time. A soap without an emotional core causes my eyes to glaze over. I have actually tuned in to other channels during the commercials and forgotten to tune back in. Now I am turning the set off when I find my mind wandering. When it comes to GH I feel there is no there there just stuff happening that makes it possible for the "lead" to have a story...rarely good and mostly, bad and indifferent. ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ


      • #4
        Felicia and/or Laura are both strong women who SHOULD have been mayor. Lulu COULD be a hard hitting investigative reporter if they LET her. Jordan COULD HAVE been an amazing police commissioner with Dante and Nathan as her detectives. Anna needs to get her mojo back and keep it. Lucy and Laura could have been running their cosmetic company that they were going to start.

        A lot of could have beens that are just falling by the wayside. These writers need to WAKE UP.


        • #5
          Monty and Labine were strong female producers/writers. That's the big difference.

          I haven't heard of any new women coming through the pipeline who are strong writers and/or producers (or any newbies at all....it's the same old, same old retreads). What we have are survivors who will do whatever it takes to keep a job. For all I know, they may be fighting hard (with the EP and higher ups) to change some of the characters, but somehow I don't think so. I believe they have been instructed that it is a Sonny/Jason/Carly/Franco show. IMO none of these characters are good people. The rest of the characters just revolve around them. Ava is the one exception as a strong woman, but she is not a good character. So good = weak; bad = strong. This includes Griffin, who becomes weaker by the day.

          I think TPTB are just trying to hang onto the audience they have (that's why they brought Jason back). They know they are close to being cancelled. There appears to be little long-term planning or thinking.


          • #6
            One of my major problems especially in this genre which yes has male viewers but still for the most part I believe is made up of women is that right now to various degrees so many women are all reactionary to their men.

            Liz-I could write a thesis but to make it short she has been placed in this “person A” characterization for Franco. She talks about him constantly, she goes against vows of secrecy for him, she worries about him and constantly assuaged his lame fears. All to the detriment of her having her own feelings and own issues. I’ve said it before though maybe not verbatim-Franco gets Stepford Liz. I want Liz in all her areas of black, white and gray. And I don’t think Franco could handle it. He can’t even handle her hugging Drew. They could have paired him with a Day player and done pretty much they exact same thing. But he would t be as “redeemed”

            Anna. I grew up watching Anna (dates self). There’s the Peter dibacole which makes no sense. And now with Finn once again she’s kind of “girlfriend of”. I am supposed to see her as opening up to Finn but all I see is lame attempts at comedy and her making choices based upon what she things Finn needs.

            Ava and Kiki-Griffin isn’t all of that. But this is not a normal triangle. They took away what could have been a good story about Kiki and turned it into a basic soap staple of when will the ons come out. This story with Bensch could have and should have been more about the harassment and involved her peers ie TJ who lost out on the shadow program. Was it because of Bensch etc...
            Ava went on a curvy road for Griffin but it wasn’t in this grand soap way. Meaning he didn’t even declare he loved her until late in the game. Ava twisted herself all up (for better or for worse) to be better for this man who was running dna tests on the side and when he was caught in his ons with her daughter basically after one day of appropriate groveling went on a “I’m still more superior than you” kick

            I want female characters who even if scheming for a man have more on their mind than fitting into some man’s mold. And I want stories where they can actually be about experiences rather than some sort of lame attempt to on the surface deal with issues but in the end get sullied by some lame soap staple. Yes this is a soap. But soaps previously knew when to leave those staples behind if they were going to do an important story.
            Last edited by ShaniKimura; September 29, 2018, 09:12 PM.


            • #7
              BUMP! I can't believe this thread is lost in the shuffle. I want to hear more from GH viewers. Male and female.


              • #8
                I love GH best when there is chaos and emotions going on. It's been dull. What I really want is Jason SL and romance!


                • #9
                  Most soaps do the same Days women and B&B are the same as well.


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